One thing always makes me anxious about traveling — fear that I won’t sleep well on the road. I sleep best under very specific conditions. A dark, cool room is ideal. A little light is bearable, and I can usually remove enough bedclothes to adjust for a warmer room. (I’ve been known to yank a thick duvet out of its cover so I could use the cover like a top sheet.)
The one nighttime deal breaker for me is noise. I’ve even woken myself up because I can hear myself breathing!
At home, I sleep with a cheap desktop fan that produces just the right amount of noise to drown at anything nighttime noises. For years, I tried to replicate this in hotel rooms by switching the air conditioning fan to “On” so it ran all night. This is great in the US, where central air and heating is the norm, but it’s not an option in many European hotels.
I decided to try earplugs, but they just made my head feel stuffy. Plus, it seemed to amplify my own breathing. (Yes, the sound of my breathing really does keep me awake at night!)
Earlier this year, I finally found a solution: Sleep Pillow Sounds white noise app for iPhone and iPad.
I tried a lot of white noise apps, but Sleep Pillow Sounds quickly became my favorite. Within minutes of downloading it, I was able to create my customized noise mix and head off to bed.
Sleep Pillow Sounds comes with different categories of noises, including water, nature and animals, wind and fire, and at home. Other white noise apps came with one sound in each group, but Sleep Pillow Sounds offers multiple samples of similar sounds. For example, there are five fan options, so you can pick the one that is your preferred sound.
You can also mix and match up to three different sounds. Perhaps you want to recreate the sounds of reading a book by the crackling fireplace on a rainy night. You can do it with Sleep Pillow Sounds!
Maybe you only need the sound of TV static for the first hour of your sleep. Sleep Pillow Sounds allows you to set a custom timer for the sound to end. (Or, if you’re like me, you let it run all night!) The app also runs even if your iPhone or iPad is locked, so you don’t have to worry about the screen light keeping you awake or drowning your battery.
Whether I’m traveling for pleasure or work, staying in a hotel or at a friend’s house, I always have Sleep Pillow Sounds with me. For only $2.99, it’s helped me sleep well many nights, and it sure beats hauling around a fan! (Don’t want to pay without trying it out yourself? You can get a limited free version here.)